Appellant: no information had been provided regarding the procedure of closing of a particular complaint against Insurer by IRDA - Respondent: complaints are registered & transferred to the Insurance Company concerned - CIC: matter remanded back
1. The appellant, Shri Shrikant Muralidhar Apte, submitted RTI application dated 20 February 2013 before the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO), Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority, Hyderabad; seeking information regarding internal procedure adapted at IRDA regarding processing of online complaints received against Insurer, through a total of 8 points.
2. Vide reply dated 21 March 2013, CPIO furnished information to the appellant. Not satisfied with the CPIO’s reply, the appellant preferred appeal dated 4 April 2013 to the first appellate authority (FAA) alleging that he was not satisfied with the reply on points 1 to 5. Vide order dated 6 May 2013, FAA upheld the CPIO’s decision and also clarified the same.
3. Not satisfied with the response of the public authority, the appellant preferred second appeal before the Commission.
4. The matter was heard today via videoconferencing. The appellant, Shri Shrikant Murlidhar Apte, made submissions from Mumbai. The respondents, Ms. Sarita, CPIO/Asstt. Director, made submissions from Hyderabad.
5. The appellant stated that the information sought by him is regarding the procedures adopted by the public authority for internal scrutiny of online complaints received by them. No information had been provided to him regarding the procedure of closing/disposal of a particular complaint. The appellant categorically submitted that he does not want the opinions of the CPIO/FAA rather he is seeking information as ‘held’ by the public authority.
6. The respondents submitted that as the IRDA receives lakhs of complaints, as a procedure they register the same and transfer them to the Insurance Company concerned as the insurer has to settle the grievance/complaint. Thus IRDA acts as a facilitator between the complainant and the Insurance Company. Further information has been provided to the appellant regarding the Integrated Grievance Mechanism Management System of the Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority, a tool used by IRDA and insurer for such facilitation. The respondents added that there Consumer Affairs Deptt. monitors the status of complaint on line for initiating regulatory actions when required. They further added that the standards for settling complaints are on their website.
7. The Commission remands the matter back to the CPIO with the direction to provide a clear and complete reply to the RTI applicant as held by them within 10 days of the receipt of the order of the Commission.
Citation: Shri Shrikant Muralidhar Apte v. Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority in Appeal: No. CIC/DS/A/2013/001018/MP